Indeed, There Is Still a Gaping, Atheist-Shaped Hole in the Interfaith Movement

A few years ago, I read an article by Rory Fenton, and adamantly disagreed with his assessment that atheists were missing from the interfaith movement.  After all, I was a living example of the contrary. At the time, I was employed at an interfaith seminary in Berkeley, where it was not unusual for atheists to be enrolled. I was 1 of 2 atheists serving on the Board of Directors at the Interfaith Center at the Presidio in San Francisco.  Around that same time, I was regularly invited to ‘preach’ a … [Read more...]

A Note on Dealing with Death & Dying, Trauma & Tragedy

At a recent workshop on ‘Trauma in Everyday Life,’ a psychologist spoke about big ‘T’ and little ‘t’ trauma. Big ‘T’ trauma is what we commonly refer to when speaking of serious accidents, war, death, etc. In its most severe form, big ‘T’ trauma can lead to post-traumatic stress. On the other hand, little ‘t’ trauma refers to the everyday violence we encounter, such as being teased, losing a pet or a job, being picked last in a group activity, receiving negative comments on a blog. While such exp … [Read more...]

San Francisco LGBTQI Pride: A Humanist Reflection

If you are anything like me,  last Friday's SCOTUS ruling on marriage equality completely overwhelmed you. Tears of joy were present with me throughout the day. Since not all NonProphet Status readers live in a city quite like San Francisco, where Pride is celebrated in a very major way, I thought I'd take this opportunity to share a few photos from my weekend.  Every year, the secular communities of the San Francisco Bay Area come together to march as a large contingent in the LGBTQI Pride p … [Read more...]

A Reason to Celebrate: An Incomplete List of Not-So-Holy Days

For some reason, when I first became an atheist, I began distancing myself from rites of passage, celebrations of life or anything that resembled religious ritual. Early on, my atheism took the form of rebelling against the dominant Christian norms that prevail here in the U.S. It was my way of living into my new label of choice. My phase of ‘opting out’ did not last long however, as I began to see the very real necessity of celebration.What is life without the joyous acknowledgement of this … [Read more...]

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Bill Maher reaches peak Bill Maher

In this week’s monologue, Maher managed to take the first crack at Bruce Jenner’s coming out as a transgender woman.“A lot of women in the news this week,” says Maher, transitioning from his previous joke. “Another wom.. OH! Bruce Jenner!”At this point, the audience erupts because to Maher’s audience, apparently transgender people are inherently funny.“The big interview is on tonight,” Maher goes on. “Please, no spoilers. I TiVo’ed it, which is ironic, because sometimes my TiVo also c … [Read more...]

Humanism at Yale Week

The Yale Humanist Community, directed by NPS founder Chris Stedman, just announced a week of panels, trainings, discussions, and service projects to spark conversation and engagement with Humanism in and around the Yale community--and beyond. The second annual Humanism at Yale week will be from April 5 - 12 in New Haven, CT, and will explore everything in Humanism and Humanist living from celebrancy to service to its intersections with hip hop and storytelling.For detailed descriptions … [Read more...]

Humanists doing service work abroad: an interview with Conor Robinson

Conor Robinson is a humanist speaker and activist from Los Angeles, California. He and I first met my freshman year at Yale, when he founded the Yale Humanist Society. Since graduating, he spent time in Los Angeles doing Teach for America, before pioneering the Pathfinders Project, a yearlong global humanist service trip.Conor was the recipient of Foundation Beyond Belief’s 2014 Humanist Visionary award, and he is now working with the Foundation to launch the Humanist Service Corps. I spoke w … [Read more...]

Humanists: Listen to Rev. Dr. Jonathan Walton’s Call for Justice

Last Sunday, amid an ongoing social movement nationwide asserting that #BlackLivesMatter and that the racist system of brutal police violence in America must be dismantled, one demonstration took a notably spiritual approach. At the regular Sunday congregation in Memorial Church, the church's minister Rev. Dr. Jonthan L. Walton delivered a sermon titled "Why We Can't Wait!" and called upon the parish to rise up, actively, against the undeniable injustice around them.Rev. Walton speaks of just … [Read more...]

Why are millennials leaving the church? A personal reflection

The following is a guest post written by Leah Holle, a student at Yale Divinity School. A version was originally published at her blog. Too many articles have been written about millennials leaving the church, and they’re usually written by someone from a different generation and from within the church. I am a millennial. I grew up in the church, and I made a conscious decision to “leave” the church. Somehow, I’ve ended up attending Yale Divinity School in pursuit of my Masters of Divinit … [Read more...]

Is there room for the spiritual in humanism?

At a launch party for a new local coffee shop a few nights ago—the kind of thing that draws people as much to network and get free as it does to support what’s being launched—I ended up discussing humanism, as I often do, with a few new faces. Two men stuck out to me, because they had never heard the term humanism before. And after I explained what it was, both of them immediately told me they were humanists.The first man told me that, while he’s been an atheist for quite some time, he’s neve … [Read more...]